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  • Writer's pictureLeon de Leeuw

You need your rest

There's nothing more rewarding than a good day of hard work, then getting home and popping a beer. You earned it. And the beer sure tastes better than on a lazy Saturday evening, when you spent all morning in bed and the afternoon watching some series. Somehow the events that lead up to popping the beer, everything you did during the day, will determine how well it tastes. You'll have the conscious feeling that you achieved something during the day. And hopefully that you made yourself a better person than you were yesterday. But don't go overboard. Rest is needed as much as oxygen. You can't be on full speed all the time. I had such periods. Especially when traveling. I travel in the Bulgarian winter, flights are cheap and I go find the sun in other countries. This means at least a few trips and weekend breaks each month. You'd think that makes you relax but quite the contrary. The trips are too short to even take a breath or relax. Especially if you handle my walking speed and the amount of sights crammed into a tight schedule. I don't regret any of my trips. Perhaps just the one time where I had only one hour in Venice. Apart from that, I loved all of them. And I don't compromise, because I travel alone. I can only blame myself if I don't like my trip or feel too rushed.

Recently I settled down a bit more. Perhaps it's the age. Or just common sense, in the way that my life gets better when I take it slower, one minute at a time. I lost the wild feathers of spending 10 hours on a bus on Friday night and getting back on Sunday night. Yes, I'm tempted to make many more trips, but I'm choosing for some more relaxation now. I found that I feel more relaxed when I stay in on the weekend, perhaps just go work out and do the laundry. Never thought I would enjoy such weekends, but I do. People even said I looked well-rested, which is quite a sign. I went to the city park, where I rarely come, and questioned why I even need to go outside the city with such a large forest right near my home. I tried working out every day. It made me exhausted. I feel far better with a day of rest in between. I saw hiking as relaxation but then ended up walking 30 kilometres. Anything but rest. This is performance as well. Keep in mind that rest makes you a more productive member of society. You're not a work horse. You're a human that can decide when it needs rest. And best is to listen to it. Yes, almost every time your body tells you to not go to the gym and you go, you'll know it tried to trick you into laziness. But if you're really sour at the squat rack, better go for a slow walk on the treadmill instead. Don't drain your batteries to the point where you don't even notice it anymore. Rest leads to a longer lifespan. And even if you feel you don't need it, your rest will turn you into a better version of yourself. As opposed to when you'd just keep going. Take off some of the speed, enjoy the sunset, really enjoy the cup of coffee you're having. Go to a spa, get a massage. These are the moments you'll end up remembering.

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